From the latest advancements in military technology and design comes the Zumwalt-class destroyers, known as the DDG 1000. They represent a group of United States Navy guided missile destroyers designed with stealth strategy, along with a range of sophisticated weaponry.
Designed for land attacks, the Zumwait Class destroyers maintain the following arms:
- Tomahowk Missiles: Medium to long-range, low-altitude missiles designed to attack a variety of ship or land targets.
- ESSM (Evolved SeaSparrow) Missiles: Designed for precision attacks in order to avoid collateral damage.
- AGS 150mm guns
- 57mm close in guns
This class of ships was named after Admiral Elmo Zumwalt, who was the 19th Chief of Naval Operations and served in WWII, the Korean War and Vietnam War.
These ship’ stealth capabilities are quite intriguing and its reduction in personnel is even more intriguing. Due to its 21st century lighter weight design, about 50 tons of extra weight was removed from the deckhouse, which is the superstructure of the ship. There was also a change in the secondary gun system. This weaponry is used for close-in defense and was originally designed to equip the ships with the Mark 110 57mm gun, but by closer examination, it was determined that the Mark 46 30mm gun system was just as effective; however, they are half the weight and half as expensive.
This new design also took into consideration more moving space for quick transfer of weapons.
Initially, 32 ships were planned at a cost of $9.6 billion for research and development, but the quantity of ships were reduced down to 10 and later to 3.
Regardless of the amount of ships, the efficiency of the Zumwalt-class destroyers makes them a formidable force against the adversaries we currently face and is a welcome addition for the United States Navy.